BREAKING: Betty White Dead at 99

Beloved entertainment icon Betty White has died.  She was 99 years old.  TMZ first confirmed the news with law enforcement,…

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Lauren Jo Black

| Posted on

December 31, 2021

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Betty White; Photo via CBS

Beloved entertainment icon Betty White has died. 

She was 99 years old. 

TMZ first confirmed the news with law enforcement, who revealed White died at her home on Friday morning (Dec. 31). 

White, who would have turned 100 on January 17, was a trailblazing entertainer. She starred in multiple shows throughout the past eight decades, including her most famous role as Rose Nylund in the famous sitcom The Golden Girls from 1985 to 1992. 

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“Even though Betty was about to be 100, I thought she would live forever,” her agent and longtime friend Jeff Witjas told PEOPLE in a statement. “I will miss her terribly and so will the animal world that she loved so much. I don’t think Betty ever feared passing because she always wanted to be with her most beloved husband Allen Ludden. She believed she would be with him again.” 

Ahead of her 100th birthday, White sat down with PEOPLE to discuss how she felt about turning 100 years old. 

“I’m so lucky to be in such good health and feel so good at this age,” she shared. “It’s amazing.”

In true Betty White form, she joked that the secret to her long life was: “I try to avoid anything green. I think it’s working.”

Betty White, People Magazine
Betty White, People Magazine

White was an eight-time Emmy Award winner and held the record for the longest TV career of any entertainer after making her acting debut in 1939. 

Born in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois in 1922, White was an only child of Tess and Horace White. 

The family soon relocated to California where she was introduced to Hollywood. 

After landing the lead role in a school play, she made her television debut just a month after graduating high school. 

Her credits include The Mary Tyler Moore Show, The Proposal, Lake Placid, Hot in Cleveland, The Bold and the Beautiful and more. 

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Lauren Jo Black

Written by

Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for Answers.com and her work being featured on Forbes.com. She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.